“This too will pass.”
Whenever my mother says this phrase to me, it is a sigh that comes through my Blackberry and leaves me unconvinced.
Not because I don’t believe that situations come and go. I know that much to be true. But because in that moment, I see nothing but the fog of it all. And there’s no passing in sight.
And I guess that is what it will always feel like until you get through it. Observers see it like in the movies, there is an end to the trials and their chokehold grip. At the end of it all, before the last scene you’ll be happy, smiling, in love and free. So they encourage and they do what you would do for them, utter that same phrase, “This too will pass.”
It’s a wretched cycle when you’re on the receiving end. But no matter how many times life flings your sanity around, you know it’s true right? You know it will, right?
Today, things seems to be staying to the ground, no crises floating Inception style upward. Holding it down, I get to be the one speaking it your life. But there will come a time when you have to speak it into me, your friends, your family and others you love. And you have to be able to say it convincingly, because you know what it is to be there and see nothing but the haze. You have to be able to speak through that.
The most powerful thing I’ve realized about the fog is that when it lifts, everything is changed. When it’s gone, you almost need a different map or new pair of eyes because the roadblocks you remember are gone, the demons that haunted you have gone away and so is the noise. Standing there with no directions of how to navigate this new place, you almost wish for the voices so you could asked to find your way. You almost wish for the roadblocks again- least they told you where you couldn’t go.
But you’re missing it. Because before you even get to that unfamiliar place, before you even get to the point where you have to figure the new way out- you have to be there. That’s why that voice sighs, “This too will pass.” Because it will, it must pass. Because the challenge we are all facing is figuring out the terrain we’re on.
Have you ever taken the time to think what the ground will look like when the air is clear? Have you ever just rejoiced in the unfamiliar new ground that will show itself? That’s the great thing about this life of ours that in a blink it could all be new.
Many people know Paulo Coelho for his legendary, “The Alchemist” but my favorite work by him is his book, “The Zahir.” A book about a writer whose wife leaves with no explanation, the story follows the main character as he searches for her. In the midst of the quest, Coelho writes something that applies so well to the journey we are all on.
“It’s not my story anymore: whenever I speak about the past now, I feel as if I were talking about something that has nothing to do with me. All that remains in the present are the voice, the presence, and the importance of fulfilling my mission. I don’t regret difficulties I experienced; I think they helped me to become the person I am today, I feel the way a warrior must feel after years of training; he doesn’t remember the details of everything he learned, but he knows how to strike when the time is right.”
Today, remember your trials are just moments you will soon forget. Reach through the fog and get ready for your fingertips to touch something new.